Haas Takes Charge After Shooting Four-Under 66

From Times Staff and Wire Reports

Jay Haas finished strong Friday in the Tour Championship at Atlanta, saving par on the 17th from 60 feet away in a bunker, then making a 12-foot birdie putt for a four-under-par 66 and a two-shot lead over Stephen Ames, who also shot 66.

Tiger Woods, winless for eight months, made two birdies with stunning recovery shots and matched his best score of the year, a bogey-free 64 that left him three shots back.

U.S. Open champion Retief Goosen had a 66 and joined Woods at four-under 136.

Vijay Singh has some catching up to do if he wants to end the year with 10 victories. He shot 73, ending his streak of 13 rounds at par or better.


That left him in 17th place among 30 players, nine shots out of the lead.


Annika Sorenstam started her quest for a fourth consecutive Mizuno Classic title with an eagle and held a share of the lead after the first round. She shot a 63 and was tied with Chihiro Nakajima at nine-under in the $1-million LPGA Tour event at Otsu, Japan.

Motor Racing


Ryan Newman won his ninth pole of the season and fourth in a row in qualifying for Sunday’s NASCAR Nextel Cup Series Checker Auto Parts 500 at Phoenix International Raceway.

His fast lap of 135.854 mph in a Dodge on the one-mile oval easily topped the mark of 134.178 set in 2000 by Rusty Wallace. Rookie Brian Vickers, in a Chevrolet, took the second spot with a lap of 133.879 mph.

David Starr won the NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series Chevy Silverado 150 at Phoenix. Starr, driving a Chevrolet, held off Jack Sprague’s Chevrolet in a 10-lap sprint after the last of six caution periods, beating him by .297 of a second.

The Hendrick Motorsports plane that crashed Oct. 24 and killed all 10 aboard missed the approach to the airport and failed to immediately climb before crashing into a mountain, according to a preliminary report.


The National Transportation Safety Board said the proper procedure after a missed approach at Blue Ridge Regional Airport in Spencer, Va., called for the aircraft to maneuver right and climb to 2,600 feet.

Instead, the report said, the Beech 200 King Air descended to 1,800 feet before crashing at an altitude of 2,450 feet. It was en route from Concord, N.C., to Martinsville Speedway.


Fourth-seeded Jennifer Capriati’s hopes of playing in next week’s WTA Tour Championships at Staples Center ended with a 6-0, 6-1 loss to sixth-seeded Vera Zvonareva in the quarterfinals of the Advanta Championships at Villanova, Pa. In the semifinals, Zvonareva will play seventh-seeded Nadia Petrova, who beat second-seeded Anastasia Myskina, 6-3, 4-6, 6-4.


Sixth-seeded Marat Safin hit 10 aces and defeated second-seeded Lleyton Hewitt, 6-4, 7-6 (2), in the quarterfinals of the Paris Masters. Safin will play 13th-seeded Guillermo Canas, who beat Feliciano Lopez, 6-3, 6-3.


Former Seattle Seahawk receiver Tommy Kane was sentenced in Montreal to 18 years in prison for the stabbing death of his wife on Nov. 30, 2003. Kane, 40, played for the Seahawks from 1988 to ’92.



Al Onofrio, former football coach at Missouri, died Friday at Desert Samaritan Hospital in Mesa, Ariz., said one of his sons, Mike Onofrio. He was 83. About a week ago, he was diagnosed with non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma, his son said.